Lost in the roller coaster fourth quarter of Sunday's Eagles loss, a frustrating afternoon for Birds fans everywhere, was an iffy final 15 minutes of refereeing.
The Derek Barnett penalty was an obvious call, but there were some questionable misses from the zebras (delay of game on the game-sealing play, anyone?) that might've cost the Eagles a shot at a win.
One in particular, the personal foul call on the fourth quarter K'Von Wallace hit on 49ers running back Trey Sermon which caused what could've been a game-changing fumble, was extremely borderline - and Wallace was still fuming about the hit with the game in the rearview.
Wallace took to his Instagram stories on Sunday night to get his thoughts on the hit out in the open:
And if the text is a little obscured by the Instagram UI, here's what Wallace wrote:
"Worst call I've ever been apart [sic] of can't believe. Literally in disbelief"
When you re-watch the play, it's hard to blame him for the anger. Wallace is coming in low, likely going for a wrap-up tackle around Sermon's legs, when Sermon is hit by another Eagle and suddenly his head is pointed towards the ground... and Wallace's head:
There's only so much you can do in that situation. If Sermon isn't jarred by another defender and Wallace is able to make the tackle he wanted to make, it's just a good tackle. I know what the referees saw on replay, but they should be able to parse the difference between targeting the head and incidentally meeting a helmet that wasn't supposed to be there.
Eagles legend Chris Long didn't like the call, nor did he appreciate NFL rules analyst Dean Blandino trying to explain away the crew's decision:
After the game, Nick Sirianni said the Eagles just have to trust that the referees make the right calls, but the coaching staff would look at the tape and make their own evaluations.
I'll be very interested to see if Sirianni's changed his tune during his day-after press conference Monday. I'd imagine at least one of his players is probably hoping for his coach's backing.
Subscribe to the Eagle Eye podcast: